Five Things Friday #12

Saturday, January 11, 2020
I'm aware that I'm a day late to the party, but hey ⎼ better late than never! I'm linking up with Bright on a BudgetBYBMG and Della Devoted for this week's Five Things Friday. 

ONE. I picked up my custom made ring yesterday and it turned out beautifully! The big stone is a turquoise and the smaller one is a moonstone, which are my parents' birthstones. My dad's fingerprints are engraved on the inside. We decided to leave the ring unpolished to give it a more organic look. I'm very happy to have such a lovely and tangible tribute to the memory of someone who was so important and dear to me. ♡

TWO. I bought a satin pillowcase, because it's supposed to keep my curls soft and frizz-free. After a few nights of sleeping on it, I did notice a difference. My hair was less flat, making my morning retouches a lot easier and quicker.

THREE. I switched to a backpack for everyday use, because it's more comfortable and convenient than my handbag. It's smaller than a regular backpack, but big enough to hold all the essentials. I often stop by the drugstore or supermarket on my way home from work and it's just so much easier to carry those groceries in my backpack than having to tote around an extra bag. It's also pretty stylish, if I do say so myself.

FOUR. One of my 20 in 2020 goals is to take better care of my skin and after doing some research, I made a couple of changes to my skin care routine. I changed my daily cleanser and started using serums by The Ordinary. I love this brand! They offer a huge range of simple but pure products that really work. They're also incredibly affordable, so it's a win-win!

FIVE. My friends and I (finally) picked a date for our New Year's lunch. It took some effort, but we were able to make it work. It's always a challenge to get the whole group together; we all have busy lives and demanding jobs, but we have been friends for a long time and true friends are rare these days. I just feel it's important to have at least one day where we all get to be together and have a good time to help keep those ties strong.

20 in 2020

Saturday, January 4, 2020

I'm feeling motivated by Anne's list, so I've come up with my own list of 20 things to help me make 2020 a great year. 

  1. Read one book per month
  2. Exercise three times a week
  3. Put a small amount of money into savings each week
  4. Clean out my closet
  5. Travel to Scotland
  6. Go to the movies by myself
  7. Find the perfect flared jeans
  8. Get a new door fly curtain
  9. Treat my mom to a spa day for her birthday
  10. Go to the beach
  11. Have birthday dinners with my cousins
  12. Do a no-buy month
  13. Read Recursion by Blake Crouch
  14. Clean out all cupboards and drawers in my living room
  15. Take better care of my skin
  16. Learn to speak Spanish by using the Duolingo app 
  17. Get new curtains for my bedroom
  18. Try audiobooks
  19. Learn to fill in my eyebrows
  20. Have my car serviced

I look forward to working on and accomplishing these goals! I already deposited this week's amount into my savings account and ordered a copy of Recursion! 

Five Things Friday: Hello 2020

Friday, January 3, 2020
Hello and welcome to the first Five Things Friday post of 2020! I don't know about you, but I'm ready to start off the new year with excitement and enthusiasm! 

For this post, I'm not going to talk about last week's highlights. There weren't really that many to begin with ━ it was a quiet week, save for all the premature fireworks going off in my neighborhood. Instead, I'd like to take a little bit of time to reflect on the previous year. 

So, 2019 was a calm and relaxing year for me with a couple of big hits. For starters, I learned a lot about myself and the things that make me happy. I grew more confident in my job and while I am still learning to be more comfortable with myself, I feel like I've come a long way. I'm hoping that all of this will set a positive tone for the coming year. 

Speaking of those big hits, I went on vacation in September 2019. This was kind of a huge deal for me, because I haven't been on vacation in years. I was in a bad financial state for a long time and couldn't afford anything other than a day trip to the beach. But that changed after I paid off my debts at the end of 2018. I didn't have a large income, but I was no longer flat broke. I managed to save money and take a short trip to Valencia with my girlfriends. It was every bit as amazing as I had hoped it would be and I'm very happy and grateful that I got to do this. 

Last year was also the year I started working out regularly and developed healthier eating habits. It paid off, because I lost weight and felt more comfortable in my own skin. I'll admit I fell off the wagon after I came back from vacation and I've been struggling to get back on track ever since. But another important lesson I've learned is to not be too hard on myself. Self-care comes in many forms and it's about finding the right balance. And kicking myself in the butt every now and then. 

New Year, Same Me

I'm happy (and relieved) to say that 2019 was a good year and even one for the books. This year, I simply want more of the same. I want to stop beating myself up over all I haven't done and find out out if I'll have more success and be happier if I celebrate the things I do like about myself. I want to push myself, but also be kinder to myself. I want to embrace the things that bring me joy and then share that joy with my loved ones. I want to be all about the art of savoring by being nostalgic and cultivating awe and wonder at the world around me. In short: I want to amplify the good stuff in life! So here's to recognizing happy moments big and small, and allowing yourself to fully appreciate and enjoy them! (Credit.)

Wishing everyone a great weekend and a joyous 2020! May nothing but love and happiness come through your door!

Currently in January 2020

Wednesday, January 1, 2020
Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a wonderful night and that this year will be filled with happiness, love and good luck! Today, I'm linking up with Anne in Residence for the first Currently of 2020!  

Resolving | to continue to focus on the things that make me happy, and then do that. It doesn't have to be anything in particular, just as long as it brings me joy. I'd also like to try and give myself leeway for disappointments. If it doesn't always go so well, I don't want to be too hard on myself, because I'll only be hurting myself more than helping.

Reading | I'm not reading anything at the moment. I spent most of December binge-watching Christmas movies and new shows on Netflix. But now I'm ready to cut back on my TV time and get back into reading. I'm not quite sure where to start, but there are plenty of books on my TBR list so I'm sure I'll find something that will help me kick-start my reading habit.

Cleaning | up after Christmas, which is always a bittersweet event for me. On the one hand, it's sad to say goodbye to the magic of the holidays. But on the other hand, it always feels really good to reclaim the space that the Christmas tree takes up.

Creating | I'm not creating anything, but I'm feeling motivated by Anne to create my own 20 in 2020 list! I did an 18 in 2018 list for the first time and even though I didn't accomplish everything on my list, it was a great way to keep track of my goals and intentions. I'm going to think of some good stuff to plan for 2020!

Planning | our annual New Year's lunch. Up until now, my friends and I always managed to get together as early in January as possible. But this time, it looks like we're going to have to push it back to February since we can't get all of our schedules to line up. It's not quite what I had in mind, but I'll take what I can get. 
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